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Appreciating Our School

Catholic Schools Week 2024
All+Catholic+Schools+Mass+at+St.+Francis+de+Sales+
Sage Barden ‘24
All Catholic Schools Mass at St. Francis de Sales

Last week, Bishop Gorman, as well as the elementary and middle schools in the Archdiocese of Las Vegas, celebrated Catholic Schools Week. 

The week opened up with an all Bishop Gorman mass at Holy Spirit Catholic Church on Monday. Father Jacob Knee, chaplain for Bishop Gorman High School, was joined by Father Miguel Corral, pastor of Saint Anne Catholic Church, and Deacon Jacob Favela of Christ The King Catholic Church. Students from different clubs and groups represented those groups by participating in the mass, and the Worship Choir led the mass in song. 

Karoline Watters ‘26, who participated in the Worship Choir, commented, “It is important to have a mass during Catholic Schools Week because it helps remind us of the unity we share with all Catholics across the Valley.” 

On Mitebox Tuesday, the school raised $734.70, with Student Services bringing in the most money, $74. The money raised went to an elderly woman who recently had heart surgery. She is waiting for her disability check to arrive, and this money is going to help her keep her home. The students also got to participate in a Spirit Wear Day, and doughnuts were passed out outside of Campus Ministry in the morning.

Staff and students enjoy donuts in front of Campus Ministry during Catholic Schools Week (Lindsay Paige ’25)

On Wednesday, the All Catholic Schools Mass was held at St. Francis de Sales. Archbishop George Leo Thomas performed the mass. Some Bishop Gorman students, invited by Campus Ministry, attended the mass, as well as seventh and eighth grade students from the middle schools in the Archdiocese. 

Lily Setzler ‘26, who was chosen by Father Knee to represent Bishop Gorman at the All Catholic Schools Mass, said, “During the homily, I felt that I was able to understand the deeper meaning that the archbishop was trying to proclaim due to his own personal connections.” 

On Thursday, a cork board was placed outside of Campus Ministry where students could write a prayer for their future vocation. 

On Friday, a mass was held in the chapel at 7:15 a.m. with the intention of honoring Saint Blaise and hosting the ring blessings for the varsity women’s volleyball, and doughnuts were passed out after the mass. Throughout the day, thirty minute Adoration sessions were held that faculty, staff, parents, and alumni could attend. Lastly, teachers were granted a special jeans day to show the school’s appreciation for them. 

Not only was Catholic Schools Week a time to celebrate all that we do in a Catholic school, but it gave the students an opportunity to reflect on their gratitude and appreciation for the privilege of being in, not only a private, but a Catholic school. It allows students to realize the value of having a Catholic education. 

Mya Munoz ‘26, who has been a part of the Catholic schools system since preschool, said, “A Catholic education is important because I am able to be in an environment where my religion is important while learning.” 

Kahlen DuFrene ‘26 expressed, “I believe the schools want to educate students into the true values and meaning of the Catholic faith and not just the broad information that everyone already knows.” 

Kyrene Sideco ‘26, who has been in Catholic school for her entire academic career, believes “that Catholic education is important because it is a more disciplined environment” and that “it teaches students to be committed to their work while having a balanced life with our faith.” 

Sideco also explained how Catholic schools help students grow in their faith daily. “Seeing reminders of Jesus’ sacrifice in every classroom and seeing statues of Mother Mary continues to remind me who I am living my life for. Catholic school has also taught me that there’s more to my faith than just going to church, but the environment I place myself in also shapes how strong or weak my relationship with God is.” 

Father Knee provided insight on the real reason for having Catholic schools. He explained, “At the heart of a Catholic education is the person of Jesus Christ…Every Catholic school exists to proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ.” 

He also explained how Catholic schools contribute to society as a whole. “Catholic schools embody the welcome of Mother Church by embracing students from different cultural backgrounds and of different religious affiliations. In this way, Catholic schools also seek to promote dialogue and to foster a peaceful society.” 

DuFrene shared a similar sentiment, “I also love that the Catholic faith and education is accepting to everyone.” 

Catholic Schools Week was a huge success at Bishop Gorman. Students and faculty alike enjoyed the opportunity to remember what is important about being in a Catholic school. Ms. Wellington shared, “Keeping faith in our education is a reminder that God is by our side, not just at Mass or when we pray, but with us when we learn, when we study, take a test, do our homework or participate in our favorite activities.”

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